This simple, easy-to-prepare Strawberry Ice Cream Cake features a decadent, fudgy chocolate cake topped with sweet, fruity ice cream.
Ilove recipe ideas that happen by chance, like the one for this Strawberry Ice Cream Cake.
While I was taking pictures of some Bittersweet Chocolate Cakes recently, I stuck one of them in the freezer to keep the ice cream scoop I’d topped it with from melting. Several hours later, when I finally got around to eating it, I couldn’t get over the soft, fudge-like texture of the frozen cake.
As I ate it, I had a vision of an ice cream cake topped with strawberry ice cream and fresh berries. As soon as I could, I tried my hand at making this vision a reality.
I baked a larger version of the cakes in a springform pan and layered on strawberry ice cream. It was so easy to make, and it looked and tasted just as I’d imagined!
Rarely do my baking experiments turn out just right the first time around, but this one sure did.
The tender, rich chocolate base stays moist and light, with an almost fudge-like texture, providing the perfect backdrop for smooth, sweet strawberry ice cream. Whipped cream and fresh strawberries add the finishing touches to this decadent frozen dessert.
How to Make Strawberry Ice Cream Cake
Start by baking the chocolate cake in a 9-inch springform pan. This simple recipe includes just five ingredients and comes together quickly.
As the cake bakes, the surface will crack, and, as it cools, it will become uneven. Once you add the ice cream, it won’t show at all!
Cool the cake until just warm to the touch. Transfer it to the freezer to chill for several hours. You want the cake to be quite cold before adding the ice cream. This helps the soft cake hold its shape and keeps the ice cream from melting on contact.
When the cake has frozen, beat the ice cream in the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. It will be quite stiff at first.
It helps to chop up the ice cream in large blocks and add them to the bowl a few at a time. Keep the mixer on low speed initially or the ice cream may come flying out the top of the bowl.
Working as quickly as you can, mix the ice cream until it becomes pliable but not melted. If it’s an especially hot day, you may want to put the mixing bowl in the freezer to chill before getting started. If the ice cream gets too melted while you’re working, put it in the freezer for a few minutes before continuing.
Once the ice cream becomes spreadable, remove the cake base from the freezer. Press down on any loose cake edges to smooth the surface gently, leaving the crumbs where they are.
Spoon the ice cream in a layer over the cake’s surface and then spread it out evenly to the edges with an offset spatula.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and return the cake to the freezer for several hours.
How to Serve Strawberry Ice Cream Cake
Remove the cake from the freezer about 10 to 15 minutes before you plan to serve it. In the meantime, whip the cream and wash and dry some fresh strawberries.
Unmold the cake and transfer it to a serving plate. Pipe or spoon mounds of the whipped cream on the cake and top them with strawberries.
If you’re not serving the whole cake at once, I recommend cutting and plating slices before adding garnishes. The whipped cream tastes better cold rather than frozen, and the strawberries become hard as rocks in the freezer.
While I’m partial to this strawberry version, this ice cream cake lends itself well to other flavor variations. For my daughter’s 13th birthday, we had a mint chip version that turned out great!
Experiment with your favorite flavors and toppings to come up with the ice cream cake of your dreams!
Strawberry Ice Cream Cake
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter sliced in pieces
- 3 large eggs
- 2/3 cups granulated sugar
- pinch kosher salt
Ice Cream and Toppings
- 1 1/2 quarts premium strawberry ice cream
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 pint fresh strawberries
- Preheat oven to 375° F. Cut a 4 by 30-inch strip of parchment paper.
- Generously butter a 9-inch springform pan. Disassemble the pan and wrap the parchment on the inside edge, pressing it to adhere to the sides. Put the pan back together carefully, working to keep the parchment smooth. Add a little butter behind the overlapping end, if needed, to help it lay flat. Butter the parchment paper and set the pan aside.
- Combine the chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl. Set the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring frequently until melted and smooth. Remove the bowl from the saucepan to cool slightly.
- In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with a whisk, mix eggs to combine. With the mixer on low speed, pour in the sugar and add the salt. Increase speed to medium-high and whisk until the eggs are pale yellow and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Fold about 1/3 of the egg mixture into the warm chocolate mixture. Scrape the chocolate mixture into the remaining eggs and fold gently until evenly combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake until the top puffs up, turns crisp, and cracks, about 25 minutes.
- Cool the pan on a rack until just barely warm to the touch. Place the cake in the freezer for several hours or overnight.
- Cut up the ice cream into large pieces. Add them, a few at a time, to the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed to soften the ice cream and increase the speed as it starts to becomes pliable.
- Once the ice cream becomes just spreadable, remove the cake from the freezer. Quickly press down loose edges to smooth the surface.
- Spoon the ice cream over the cake's surface, covering as much of it as you can. With an offset spatula, spread the ice cream evenly, smoothing it to the pan's edges. Cover the top of the springform pan with plastic wrap and return it to the freezer for at least three hours.
- About 10 to 15 minutes before serving, remove the cake from the freezer.
- In the meantime, combine heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer or hand whisk, beat until soft peaks form.
- Unmold the cake and transfer it to a serving plate with a large cake spatula. Pipe or spoon mounds of the whipped cream on the cake and top them with strawberries. Alternatively, cut and plate slices before adding garnishes. Serve immediately.
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